June 19, 2008
John McCain visited Springfield yesterday, and we busted him! I had recently discovered on opensecrets.org that McCain ranked number one among Senators recieving money from the oil & gas industry. In order to dramatize his ties to big oil, we created a banner that was basically a giant check made out to John McCain which was signed by “oil company executives”. McCain was to conduct a “townhall” energy briefing in the auditorium at Plaster Student Union on Missouri State University campus. People began lining up around 8am. At 11am, as the doors were opened to let people into the auditorium, two of us dropped the check banner over the second story balcony and chanted “ENDLESS DEBT, ENDLESS WAR, JOHN MCCAIN IS A CORPORATE WHORE.” Another person in our affinity group was filming the action… we will have video online soon.
The chanting went on for several minutes before we realized that nobody was going to stop us, so I then announced to the crowd that John McCain was the 1 recipient, among US senators, of money from the Gas & Oil industry in 2008. Eventually, we went outside the building and joined several dozen other protesters who were gathered outside. As McCain’s motorcade was driving up to the buidling, everybody was chanting “no war”, “education is 1” and other slogans. McCain went by quickly, but the press pool bus stopped out on the road, and the reporters were all made to walk by us protesters.
Also… local activist Gary Wilson, who has been in DC with CODEPINK a couple times last year, got inside the auditorium and interrupted McCain’s speech by standing up in the front row and yelling, “How can we trust you on energy policy when you have taken half a million dollars from big oil in 2008.” Then as he was being escorted out of the room, he continued, “Bring the troops home now” over and over again. He was given a “disturbing the peace” citation by police, then released.
Traditionally, Southwest Missouri has been considered a “Republican stronghold”, so this strong statement of opposition to John McCain’s support of the US occupation of Iraq was incredible!
~ Midge P.
McCain Busted in Springfield MO for Oil Money Donations
Vodpod videos no longer available.
This is video of the banner drop from the balcony inside Plaster Student Union ad Missouri State University where John McCain had a townhall meeting about his energy policy.